If all goes to plan, there will be four more softball fields out at the Players Softball Complex in northeast Aberdeen by the end of the year.
The Parks and Recreation Board saw preliminary plans Wednesday from Bob Babcock of Helms & Associates engineering firm that detailed the nearly $5 million project.
There will be four new fields, a new restroom and concessions structure, bleachers and shade structures, Babcock said. Additional picnic shelters are part of $526,000 in alternate bids.
The money is expected to come from a bond issue, fundraising and existing funds, said Mark Hoven, director of the Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department. The bond could be $3.3 million to $4.4 million, depending on the use of existing money, he said.
About $50,000 would come from the Wylie Park irrigation project — the Parks Department isn’t ready to start work on that, and it would be repaid to that fund before work begins, Hoven said.
There are plenty of items that Parks and Recreation can order and assemble on its own at a lower cost than having the contractors do it, Babcock said. That includes things like trash cans, the protective yellow piping on top of the fences and bleachers.
“We’ve assembled all the bleachers that have come into the system,” Hoven said. “We’re going to try to do that as a savings as well.”
Another avenue would be corporate sponsorships. A similar strategy was used for a new softball facility a few years ago in Watertown that Helms & Associates designed, Babcock said.
The parks board will see final plans at its next meeting, Feb. 5, and Helms & Associates is set to present to the Aberdeen City Council on Feb. 10, Babcock said.
A request for proposals is expected in March, pending city council approval, and bids should be opened in April, likely at a special meeting, Hoven said.
If all goes well, construction would start in May, wrap up in November and the fields would be ready to use summer 2021, Babcock said.